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Students tell Preston health mela that physiotherapy isn’t just for sports people

16 May 2014 - 1:10pm

Student physiotherapist Daniel Roberts said that a CSP stand at the 2014 Preston health mela helped to ‘spread the word’ about the benefits of physiotherapy to the Gujarati-speaking community.

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Getting the message out: Daniel Roberts told children at the mela that physical activity can have great health benefits — photo: Keith Byers

Mr Roberts is a first-year student at the University of Central Lancashire and a CSP rep. He organised the stand and recruited other students in order to promote the CSP’s Physiotherapy Works campaign at the event on 3 May.

He said the students provided visitors to the mela, a Sanskrit word for gathering, with evidence that physiotherapy helps with a wide range of conditions.

‘I took to asking people on the day what was the first thing they thought when they heard physiotherapy, and, of course, most people related it to sport,’ he said.

‘So it was really about educating people that physiotherapy can offer a lot more than that.’

His advice to physiotherapy students is that this type of public engagement can help develop good communication skills, and is a useful addition to placements.

‘Continuing professional development is being pushed at the moment, and this type of activity is something students can add to their portfolio,’ he said. ‘When it comes to graduation and interviews, it’s good for us to speak about and reflect on what we have learned from this kind of experience.’

The Preston health mela, held in the city’s Guild Hall, was organised by the National Forum for Health and Wellbeing, formerly known as the Lancashire Gujarat Health Users’ Forum. It was sponsored by organisations including local councils and NHS trusts.

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